There are lots of different TEFL courses out there and you have probably seen the most buzz about having a Level 5 qualification, over some of the other options. But what does having a ‘Level 5 TEFL Course’ actually mean? Don’t worry, we’ll take you through it!
What is a Level 5 TEFL Course?
If an accredited course says it is at ‘Level 5’ this basically means that Ofqual (a UK Government department that regulates qualifications) has decided that the course is the equivalent of a Foundation Degree (UK) or a Diploma in Higher Education. This also means that it is categorised at the same Level as a CELTA qualification.
You need to watch out though, as there are lots of unscrupulous providers out there who will claim their qualification is to Level 5 standard without the accreditation and regulation to back it up. So, when you’re looking for your perfect TEFL course, make sure you check your provider has the Ofqual stamp of approval, meaning it legitimately is a Level 5 qualification, before you buy!
What’s the difference between a Level 5 TEFL Course and a CELTA?
Well, first off, let’s start with what the letters in the names stand for, as this makes the difference a lot clearer!
TEFL = Teaching English as a Foreign Language
CELTA = Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults
So, as you can see, a CELTA qualification is designed for teaching English to Adults only. This means that it won’t give you the skills or resources to enable you to teach all different age groups. And this might be more of a problem if you want to work abroad, where most TEFL positions will be in private or state schools working with children from 3 – 17 years old. A Level 5 TEFL qualification will train you to teach all different age groups, especially if you pick our most comprehensive qualification – the 500hr Advanced Diploma – which has specialist modules in Teaching Young learners, Coaching Exam Prep (IELTS), and Teaching Business English.
CELTA is also a more intense and expensive qualification than TEFL, as most CELTA courses require you to attend a full-time, month-long course. This would mean time off work (if you currently have a full-time job), as you’ll need to attend six-hours of classes per day and do lots of homework, including lesson planning for your practicum and four written assignments. With a Level 5 TEFL qualification, which is in the same level of classification as a CELTA, you can work around your current schedule and study when it suits you during the day. Plus, a Level 5 TEFL is a lot more affordable – winner!
Why would I pick a Level 5 Course over a Level 3 Course?
A Level 5 Course is great for those that want to make TEFL a more lucrative career option, as the more skilled you are and the more specialisms you have within TEFL (e.g. Business English and Coaching IELTS), the more money you will be able to earn as a TEFL teacher. Specialist modules aren’t present in the Level 3 course, which is designed to get you qualified to A-Level standard and help you to build a basic knowledge of TEFL – great for more entry-level positions!
If you’re looking to have more options when searching for a TEFL job, the Level 5 course is also the better pick. This is because it will train you how to teach English both in classrooms abroad and through virtual classrooms/lessons online. As the online TEFL jobs market keeps expanding, taking a Level 5 course will help you to keep your options open and will make sure you can TEFL from the comfort of your own home, as well as being able to TEFL and travel.
A Level 5 course will also help you to stand out from the crowd, especially one like our Level 5 500hr Advanced Diploma, as it shows employers you’ve done more than the basic training required and are serious about building your TEFL knowledge and skills. So, when it comes down to who they want to hire, a Level 5 qualification could help give you that edge you need to land your perfect TEFL role!
What is the difference between a Level 5 TEFL Certificate and a Level 5 TEFL Diploma?
It all comes down to the number of hours and the specialisms that they include. We are also the only TEFL course provider that offers a TEFL Diploma, so you won’t find them anywhere else!
Our Level 5 TEFL Certificate is a 180hr qualification and it includes a specialist module in Teaching Young Learners.
Our Level 5 TEFL Diplomas come in 300hr and 420hr qualifications – the 300hr course contains all the specialist modules in the 180hr course PLUS modules in Teaching One-to-One & Online and Teaching Business English. The 420hr course contains all the specialist modules in the 300hr course PLUS Teaching Other Subjects in English and Coaching Exam Prep (IELTS).
Our Level 5 Advanced TEFL Diploma is a 500hr qualification and it’s our most comprehensive course yet. It really is the gold standard in TEFL certification! The 500hr course contains all the specialist modules included in the other courses PLUS modules in How to set up your own TEFL Business and How to market yourself as a TEFL Freelancer. This means you can really use this qualification throughout your TEFL career and for anything TEFL-related that you want to do. From teaching in classrooms and travelling to far-flung destinations, to teaching online from your own home around a schedule that suits you and your lifestyle, and all the way up to potentially setting up your own online TEFL enterprise. Exciting stuff!
Pros of a Level 5 TEFL Certificate or Diploma
There are heaps of pros to completing a Level 5 TEFL course, but here are our top five!
- Valuable lifelong skill – once you’ve completed a Level 5 TEFL course, your certificate is valid for life – yay!
- Passport to the world – Our Level 5 TEFL qualifications are recognised around the world. So, you’ll be able to bag a job in some of the most sought after TEFL locations with a Level 5 Certificate or Diploma – think the UAE, Japan, and Europe.
- Better paid jobs online and abroad – need we say more?
- More job opportunities – Level 5 TEFL Courses open the door to a world of opportunities! With a Level 5 certificate being more desirable than a Level 3 you’ll be spoilt for choice as to where you can work.
- Better TEFL knowledge and skills – you’ll be able to teach all types of TEFL and different groups of learners, from adults to young children, and from General Conversation to Business English – get in!
Who can take a Level 5 TEFL course?
As long as you have a high level of fluency in English and a good internet connect, you are eligible to take our online TEFL courses! Nothing else required!
You don’t need to be degree level qualified and you don’t need to have any teaching experience to take one of our courses. This is something a lot of people worry about and although these elements can affect the types of jobs you can apply for, they definitely don’t stop you from taking a TEFL course! All of our courses are really suitable for TEFL beginners. And, to set your mind at rest for when you’ve passed your course, we have lots of graduates working as full-time TEFL teachers that aren’t degree-level qualified and didn’t have prior experience before starting. Check out Audrey’s graduate story for just one example!